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Anger at late notice of Para-cycling Track World Championships

Jody Cundy says event will be defined by reduced fields

Seven-time Paralympic champion, Jody Cundy, tweeted:

To which multiple UCI Para-cycling World Champion Eoghan Clifford replied:

Adam Duggleby, double gold medallist with Stephen Bate at Rio, said:

Cundy told the BBC he could not imagine any other sport doing the same thing.

"I know of athletes not going because it is too close for them to even get back on the track, while other nations are not going because they do not have the funding.

"I am not sure the message it sends to go to Los Angeles with half of the normal competitors. It takes away from the level of competition and makes it look Mickey Mouse."

Dame Sarah Storey last week called for the World Championships to be merged with the Para-cycling World Championships in a bid to boost spectator numbers and encourage greater participation in disability sports.

“We want para-sport to get more coverage so people with impairments can identify with sporting stars more frequently, not just during the Paralympics every four years,” she said.

“The more household names you can get in the para-sport disciplines, the more people can see someone who is similar to them and say, well if they can do it, maybe I can do something similar, even if it’s not on that level.”

Rowing and triathlon have already integrated their respective world championships and Storey said she wanted to see something similar happen in as many sports as possible. “I want us to get to a point in the future where a world championship can just be about sport and we won’t have to talk about para-sport, or disabled sport and keep them separate.”

Her coach and husband, Barney Storey, a multiple Paralympic gold medallist himself, tweeted:

Commenting on the announcement, UCI President Brian Cookson said:

“We are conscious that the award of this event comes late in the season for the athletes, teams and parties implicated in the organisation of the event. However, we believe that holding these UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships for the first time ever in a post-Paralympic season signifies notable progress and will enable our athletes to benefit from an enriched calendar as the discipline continues to develop. We would like to thank the U.S. Olympic Committee for organising this important event in such a short time.”

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dottigirl | 7 years ago
1 like

Utterly inexcusable. 

Cookson is proving to be incredibly feeble in all areas. And it's even worse for those not able-bodied or male.

Leviathan | 7 years ago

Is this not an annual event? Why wouldn't it have been annouced last year? I've just googled 'Para-cycling Track World Championships 2016' and it says 20Mar16, so how is the date a surprise? Maybe not telling people where it would be could be an issue, but surely the athletes and associations knew the competition was coming, so saying they have not trained is silly. 

I am not sure that there is a big story here.

Simon E replied to Leviathan | 7 years ago
Leviathan wrote:

Is this not an annual event?


BBC News says: "There was no major track championships scheduled for 2017 prior to the announcement" and, according to a quote from Brian Cookson, it's the first time the para-cycling track Worlds will be held in the season immediately after the Olympics/paralympics.


I am not sure that there is a big story here.

The athletes may disagree. They are just as dedicated as the Kennys and co. but get a fraction of the funding, track time and recognition for their efforts.

Simon E | 7 years ago

Ireland's paralympian Colin Lynch won't be riding either. His tweets today include statements such as:

"TO be honest, I'm 99% certain our country isn't going due to last minute and costs."

"We don't even know our individual or team funding for 2017 yet! I'm already spending money I may or may not have!"


Yes folks, this is what it's like for elite level para-athletes re. funding and poor management by UCI and national federations.

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